Leaving Cuzco was both sad and wonderful. Cuzco is a wonderful city. Full of love and wonder, it is the Pride capital of South America and a culture metropolis. However, we were heading to a day of ruins on the way to Urubamba. The ruins in Cuzco area are hundreds, if not thousands, of years old, and cover a large area of land. These are the best ones to visit, in my opinion.
From 7:00 am to 5:30 pm everyday, the historic capital of the Incan Empire is open to the public. It is a citadel on the outskirts of Cuzco, up on the hills, overlooking the city. At an altitude of 12,000 feet, the UNESCO listed heritage site has great views of the city and wonderful history. It holds waterways that ran water to and from the throne room. The ruins are beautiful and open your eyes about the world of the Incan Empire.
A small hike from the parking lot is Tambomachay, an ancient outpost of the Incan Empire. A collection of rocks, terraces and waterfalls, these ruins are a great walk, lasting about 20 minutes. There are also a bunch of vendors at the start. They have some cool items for sale, but it is extremely expensive and I say you most likely should get touristy stuff in Cuzco or Machu Picchu.
Ollantaytambo is a small village sitting underneath a large ruins in Sacred Valley, Peru. The massive Incan military fortress has a long and harsh history that you can learn all about at the interactive visitors center and the abundance of information. A small hike up the giant steps leads you to the Sun Temple, which the Incans used to pray to their most revered god.